You think you're ready to debate William Lane Craig? Well, you're not.
Andrew over at Evaluating Christianity has advice for anybody that thinks they're ready. This is excellent material and very well worth reading if you are interested in being an effective debator. So far it's in 5 parts, all of which are linked at his latest addition.
I've learned a lot from calling in to Christian radio shows, and I think I've improved. Speaking is quite a bit different from writing. More challenging. If you ever want to consider doing it just remember that it's OK to lose. It's just like going to the gym and working out. If you've never been to a gym you're probably small and weak. You're intimidated by everyone else. But remember that everyone else was once small like you are now. Everyone had to go through the same thing. To improve you need to get in there and put up with it. You'll get better and you'll fit in eventually.
One area where I think I could improve is the fact that I sometimes let my opponent dictate what we're going to talk about. Take my recent talk with Bob Dutko. I started by laying out a basic case against torture based on the opinions of the founding fathers. Bob basically entirely ignored my argument. He went off into discussions about being searched at an airport. I allowed this. Eventually while listening to him I realized that he was turning the discussion away from torture entirely. It took me too long to realize this, but I did finally, and I brought the discussion back. But he never bothered to deal with my central argument about the founding fathers.
Of course this is a radio show so maybe this makes things a little different. I'm partly satisfied that I was simply able to express my point and maybe that's about the best I can hope for. It's not like an equal time scenario.
In my experience Greg Koukl really takes this to the extreme. He always seems to put me at the top of the hour where there will only be a few minutes and he can be done with me, and in the few minutes that I have he'll just talk over me even though he misunderstands me. So there's not much by way of tactics that you can do about that. For this reason I'm not very interested in calling him. Wait an hour on hold just to be talked over, misunderstood, and then swept aside at the top of the hour? Pretty lame.